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Intraventricular haemorrhage during infancy ups risk of being hospitalized during childhood

30 Jan 2020

Neonatal intraventricular haemorrhage appears to increase the likelihood of being hospitalized later in childhood, a recent study has shown.

Researchers assessed 794,384 infants of whom 0.2 percent (n=1,322) had grade I–IV intraventricular haemorrhage during the neonatal period. The outcome of interest was childhood hospitalization. Participants were followed for an average of 5.4±3.3 years.

A total of 245,065 participants later had to be hospitalized during childhood. The incidence rate was 23.8 hospitalizations per 100 person-years in those who had had neonatal intraventricular haemorrhage. In their control counterparts, the corresponding incidence rate was much lower, at 5.7 hospitalizations per 100 person-years.

This effect was particularly strong in infants with grade III/IV haemorrhage (49.5 hospitalizations per 100 person-years). Disaggregating according to gestational age found that the effect of intraventricular haemorrhage on eventual hospitalization risk remained true in preterm (with vs without: 2.3 vs 0.9 per 100 person-years) and term (2.0 vs 0.5 per 100 person-years) infants.

Adjusted Cox proportional hazards regression models found that intraventricular haemorrhage significantly increased the risk of childhood hospitalization (hazard ratio [HR], 1.56, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.43–1.70). This relationship appeared to be stronger in those born term (HR, 3.19, 95 percent CI, 2.55–4.00) than preterm (<28 weeks of gestation; HR, 2.06, 95 percent CI, 1.75–2.42).

The present findings may help clinicians identify patients who are at risk of future hospitalization and may improve their counsel with parents, the researchers said.

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